From the Russian Foreign Ministry on Syrian chemical dossier

From the Russian Foreign Ministry
April 7, 2017

The Russian Federation has invariably held the unequivocal and straightforward position that any use of chemical weapons by anyone is absolutely unacceptable under any circumstances, and those responsible for such crimes must be held accountable.

However, the so-called red line set by President Obama in 2012, the crossing of which was supposed to trigger outside military intervention in the intra-Syrian conflict, was clearly the watershed moment in this story – which has been so unscrupulously distorted by our Western partners – about the use of toxic chemicals in Syria and then the use of actual chemical warfare agents. It was this decision that served as a starting point for a host of ensuing provocations by terrorist and extremist groups who used chemical weapons in an effort to discredit official Damascus and create an opportunity for the “friends of Syria” to use military force against a sovereign state. Up until then, even if there had been reports about the use of chemical weapons in that region, they concerned only Libya, where, in the absence of the Libyan state destroyed by NATO countries, non-state actors occasionally used mustard-filled artillery shells in local turf wars.

Regrettably, back then, in the absence of a political “order”, our Western partners in the Security Council chose to remain silent and inactive also in connection with the request received from Damascus in March 2013 to activate the well-known UN Secretary General’s mechanism to investigate the use of sarin by militants in Khan al-Assal district of Aleppo. This terrorist attack killed 28 Syrian troops and civilians, and wounded over 200 people.

The militants, emboldened by the inaction of the UN Security Council and their impunity, perpetrated a larger attack with the use of sarin in the outskirts of the Eastern Ghouta district of Damascus on August 21, 2013 which, according to various estimates, killed and wounded over 1,500 people. This was still not enough for the opposition and its foreign patrons, and they tried to blame this barbarous action on Syrian government troops, timing it to the first visit to that country by a group of UN experts led by Swedish chemistry professor Åke Sellsrtöm. There is no need to go over the fabricated findings of the investigation into the terrorist attack in Eastern Ghouta and how revealing they are. Those who want to refresh their memory can read the report by Mr Sellsrtöm at http://www. You can also read the studies by American experts in the field of military science and ballistics: Professor of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Theodore A. Postol and former UN arms inspector Richard Lloyd, who crunched the numbers and took to pieces an account fabricated by the opposition which alleged that the Syrian Armed Forces used BM-14 multiple rocket launchers in Eastern Ghouta, although the Syrian army had withdrawn them from operational use back in 2010 ( It wouldn’t hurt to look at the materials of the journalistic investigation by Georges Malbrunot and Christian Chesnot, either (“LES CHEMINS DE DAMAS, Le dossier noir de la relation franco-syrienne”). In a word, a fake is a fake, but someone really wanted to use it as a pretext to replay the Yugoslavia, Iraq or Libya scenario in Syria.

Nevertheless, the plans of these extremists and their sponsors were not destined to materialise, and common sense prevailed. Due to the good will that Damascus showed in abandoning its chemical weapons, through combined Russian-US efforts and with complete support from the international community, it became possible in short order to successfully achieve the main goals of eliminating Syria’s chemical weapons, for which the OPCW was justly awarded the 2013 Nobel Peace Prize.

Everything would have ended on a positive note if certain interests, out of considerations of political expediency, had not applied doubled standards to the elimination of chemical weapons in Syria. Hence the contrived accusations against the Syrian military of using chlorine, as well as the notorious Syrian chemical dossier that boils down to the allegation that Damascus concealed a part of its chemical arsenal in its initial report to the OPCW.

As it became evident that Bashar Assad’s government had successfully met the targets of destroying its chemical arsenal within an unprecedentedly short time span and under the most difficult circumstances of the armed conflict, since the spring of 2014 there have been a series of planted stories alleging that Syria used chlorine as a chemical agent. The selection of this chemical leaves no doubt that terrorists have learned or were helped to learn the lessons of Eastern Ghouta. Chlorine is a common industrial and household disinfectant that is not on the OPCW list of chemical agents and it is practically impossible to place it under any verification control. What’s more, it is all but impossible to detect chlorine traces even after a short time due to its high volatility. It was in fact with due consideration for this circumstance that the OPCW Fact Finding Mission was set up with Damascus’s consent, designed to promptly respond to incidents of this kind. What has happened in reality, however, is the exact opposite: the Fact Finding Mission has never inspected the areas where chlorine was used.

Why? Because, according to a well-established account, the very first visit of FFM experts to Syria in the spring of 2014 “coincided” with a large-scale provocation by militants involving the use of chlorine in Idlib Province. However, when FFM specialists tried to visit the area of the purported incident on a tip-off from the opposition they were taken hostage by militants, which essentially put an end to any further activity by FFM experts on the ground in districts outside Damascus’s control. This is the origin of the flawed practice in the work of the FFM and then the OPCW-UN Joint Investigative Mechanism (JIM), aimed at investigating chemical weapons attacks in Syria, whereby the reports of the alleged use of chlorine by government forces fabricated by the Syrian opposition and “sympathetic” NGOs are taken at face value. In other words, there is no need for the mission to visit areas where toxic agents were purportedly used because apparently there is a danger to the safety of OPCW and UN personnel. Well, then, what about UN Security Council Resolutions 2118, 2209 and 2235 that make it incumbent on all parties to the Syria conflict to ensure unhindered access to places of chemical incidents for international experts. By the way, this provision also applies to those subjects of international relations that have influence over these parties to the conflict, above all the opposition.

On this point, another remarkable thing should be noted. The numerous advocates of the Syrian people’s interests insist both in the Hague and in New York that OPCW experts visit without delay any research and military infrastructure facility in Syria despite Damascus’s recommendations that such inspections be postponed for security reasons, blaming any delays over such “fact finding” missions on the Syrian authorities who ultimately are in fact responsible, within the framework of their sovereign jurisdiction, for the life and health of international experts.

This situation has created ideal conditions for the armed opposition and those behind it for “filtering” practically all information coming to the FFM and then to the JIM on the incidents they declare themselves, which has naturally affected the quality of the reports by both international agencies.

Thus, the findings by one of the FFM’s expert segments investigating incidents directly or indirectly reported by the armed opposition are entirely based on some eyewitness accounts selected by the same opposition groups and NGOs affiliated with them. Their interviews are conducted not even in Syria but in neighbouring countries, where photo and video materials are also collected, all of which can easily be falsified. Now what about medical reports and conclusions, the results of biomedical tests, autopsies and other forensic medical studies? Do these documents actually exist? By all indications, they do exist in some form but definitely need comprehensive verification with the use of criminological examination as to their authenticity and correlation with the use of toxic agents under particular circumstances. These conclusions are prompted, for example, by the “testimony” actively provided by senior personnel at the Sarmin field hospital, which represents the so-called Syrian American Medical Society (SAMS). In June 2015, these medical officials demonstrated at the US Congress and the UN Security Council some rather dubious photo and video materials on the alleged victims of chlorine attacks by Syrian aviation. Everybody knows very well how such materials are fabricated following the tragic events in Eastern Ghouta, as evidenced by their thorough analysis made by Mother Agnes Mariam el-Salib, mother superior of St. James Monastery in Qara (

Furthermore, the expert opinion by independent medical specialists from Sweden following a study of the video prepared by the White Helmets, a pseudo-humanitarian Syrian NGO established by James Le Mesurier, a former British special service officer, leads to a rather disturbing conclusion. The extremely unprofessional emergency medical service procedures seen in the film were described as follows: “If not already dead, this injection would have killed the child!”  It is evident right at the beginning of the video that the child was alive on arrival at the hospital, which is also confirmed by one of the “eyewitnesses,” Muawiya Hassan Agha, a White Helmets member. All of this raises serious questions about what in fact happened and why a death certificate was never issued. Mohamed Ghaleb Tennari, head of this medical facility, considered it perfectly appropriate to present this video to the Security Council, showing that his own personnel acted unprofessionally, to say the least, causing the death of a child (

If somebody still has doubts that the footage of purported incidents, in particular in Sarmin, was staged, it is enough to watch the videos made on the subject by both the White Helmets and Jabhat al Nusra, where the same “actors-correspondents” appear (, It is plain to see that the so-called White Helmets are affiliated with this terrorist organisation.

It is revealing that, in a high-profile case, in December 2016 Egyptian Interior Ministry officers detained in Port Said Province one of the “film” crews that, under “contract” with the Syrian opposition, had fabricated a series of staged photos about the “atrocities” of the Syrian armed forces (

It is noteworthy that amid all of these fabrications and fakes, the accusations against the Syrian authorities of using chlorine against militants and civilians, which were made first by the FFM and then by the JIM, are based on the notorious “helicopter trail.” Only one argument is cited: At the time the incidents took place, only government forces had helicopters the sound of which was purportedly heard at a high altitude when chlorine-filled “barrel bombs” were exploding.

To be continued…

Turkish whistleblowers corroborate story on false-flag sarin attack in Syria

Such bravery by these whistleblowers. 
Global Research, October 23, 2015
Counter Punch 23 October 2015

Recep Tayyip Erdogan Erdogan

This is quite the bombshell delivered by two CHP deputies in the Turkish parliament and reported by Today’s Zaman, one of the top dailies in Turkey.

It supports Seymour Hersh’s reporting that the notorious sarin gas attack at Ghouta was a false flag orchestrated by Turkish intelligence in order to cross President Obama’s chemical weapons “red line” and draw the United States into the Syria war to topple Assad.

If so, President Obama deserves credit for “holding the line” against the attack despite the grumbling and incitement of the Syria hawks at home and abroad.

And it also presents the unsavory picture of an al-Qaeda operatives colluding with ISIL in a war crime that killed 1300 civilians.

I find the report credible, taking into full account the fact that the CHP (Erdogan’s center-left Kemalist rivals) and Today’s Zaman (whose editor-in-chief, Bulent Kenes was recently detained on live TV for insulting Erdogan in a tweet) are on the outs with Erdogan.

Considering the furious reaction it can be expected to elicit from Erdogan and the Turkish government, the temerity of CHP and Today’s Zaman in running with this story is a sign of how desperate their struggle against Erdogan has become.  Note that the author is shown only as “Columnist: Today’s Zaman”.

I expect the anti-Erodgan forces hope this will be a game changer in terms of U.S.and European support for Erdogan.

It will be very interesting to see if and how the media in the U.S. covers this story.  In case it doesn’t acquire enough “legs” to make into US media, I attach the full Zaman piece below:

CHP deputies: Gov’t rejects probe into Turkey’s role in Syrian chemical attack

Two deputies from the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) have claimed that the government is against investigating Turkey’s role in sending toxic sarin gas which was used in an attack on civilians in Syria in 2013 and in which over 1,300 Syrians were killed.

CHP deputies Eren Erdem and Ali Şeker held a press conference in İstanbul on Wednesday in which they claimed the investigation into allegations regarding Turkey’s involvement in the procurement of sarin gas which was used in the chemical attack on a civil population and delivered to the terrorist Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) to enable the attack was derailed.

Taking the floor first, Erdem stated that the Adana Chief Prosecutor’s Office launched an investigation into allegations that sarin was sent to Syria from Turkey via several businessmen. An indictment followed regarding the accusations targeting the government.

“The MKE [Turkish Mechanical and Chemical Industry Corporation] is also an actor that is mentioned in the investigation file. Here is the indictment. All the details about how sarin was procured in Turkey and delivered to the terrorists, along with audio recordings, are inside the file,” Erdem said while waving the file.

Erdem also noted that the prosecutor’s office conducted detailed technical surveillance and found that an al-Qaeda militant, Hayyam Kasap, acquired sarin, adding: “Wiretapped phone conversations reveal the process of procuring the gas at specific addresses as well as the process of procuring the rockets that would fire the capsules containing the toxic gas. However, despite such solid evidence there has been no arrest in the case. Thirteen individuals were arrested during the first stage of the investigation but were later released, refuting government claims that it is fighting terrorism,” Erdem noted.

Over 1,300 people were killed in the sarin gas attack in Ghouta and several other neighborhoods near the Syrian capital of Damascus, with the West quickly blaming the regime of Bashar al-Assad and Russia claiming it was a “false flag” operation aimed at making US military intervention in Syria possible.

Suburbs near Damascus were struck by rockets containing the toxic sarin gas in August 2013.

The purpose of the attack was allegedly to provoke a US military operation in Syria which would topple the Assad regime in line with the political agenda of then-Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and his government.

CHP deputy Şeker spoke after Erdem, pointing out that the government misled the public on the issue by asserting that sarin was provided by Russia. The purpose was to create the perception that, according to Şeker, “Assad killed his people with sarin and that requires a US military intervention in Syria.”

He also underlined that all of the files and evidence from the investigation show a war crime was committed within the borders of the Turkish Republic.

“The investigation clearly indicates that those people who smuggled the chemicals required to procure sarin faced no difficulties, proving that Turkish intelligence was aware of their activities. While these people had to be in prison for their illegal acts, not a single person is in jail. Former prime ministers and the interior minister should be held accountable for their negligence in the incident,” Şeker further commented.

Erdem also added that he will launch a criminal complaint against those responsible, including those who issued a verdict of non-prosecution in the case, those who did not prevent the transfer of chemicals and those who first ordered the arrest of the suspects who were later released.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon announced in late August that an inquiry had been launched into the gas attacks allegedly perpetuated by both Assad’s Syrian regime and rebel groups fighting in Syria since the civil war erupted in 2011.

However, Erdem is not the only figure who has accused Turkey of possible involvement in the gas attack. Pulitzer Prize winner and journalist, Seymour M. Hersh, argued in an article published in 2014 that MİT was involved with extremist Syrian groups fighting against the Assad regime.

In his article, Hersh said Assad was not behind the attack, as claimed by the US and Europe, but that Turkish-Syrian opposition collaboration was trying to provoke a US intervention in Syria in order to bring down the Assad regime.

Peter Lee edits China Matters and writes about Asia for CounterPunch.

Two years ago, the Ghouta chemical attacks: US-backed false flag? Killing Syrian children to justify a “humanitarian” military intervention. Where is the outage?

From Global Research
By Julie Lévesque and Prof Michel Chossudovsky
August 21, 2015

Today, August 21st commemorates the East Ghouta False Flag Chemical Attacks (August 21, 2013), which were used to build up a pretext by the Obama administration and its NATO allies to launch a humanitarian war against Syria, on the grounds that the Syrian government was killing their own people.  This event was part of the build up towards the launching of Obama’s bombing campaign against Syria and Iraq on the grounds that it was “going after the ISIS”.

This article was first published in September 2014.

The chemical attacks which took place in East Ghouta on August 21, 2013 could be the most horrific false flag operation in history.

To date, available evidence indicates that numerous children were killed by “opposition rebels”, their bodies manipulated and filmed with a view to blaming the Syrian government for the attacks, thus sparking outrage and galvanizing worldwide public opinion in favor of another bloody, imperial US-led war.

While confirming the use of chemical weapons against civilians, the UN report has failed to identify the authors of the attacks:

Instead of a non-politicized investigation and lab analysis, the UN investigation of alleged nerve-gas attacks inside Syria was led by Professor Ake Sellstrom, a man of mystery who keeps a veil of secrecy around his research and political-military relationships…

This cosmetic veneer of Swedish neutrality has been deftly exploited by Israel and NATO to perpetrate falsehoods throughout Sellstrom’s work for the UN, including denial of the chemical-and-biological causes for “Gulf War Syndrome” and the shipments of U.S. chemical weapons to the Saddam Hussein regime…

What is publicly known about Sellstrom is that the biochemist heads the European CBRNE Center [Center for advanced Studies of Societal Security and Vulnerability, in particular major incidents with (C)hemical, (B)iological, (R)adiological, (N)uclear and (E)xplosive substances], at Umea University in northern Sweden, which is sponsored by the Swedish Defense Ministry (FOI)…

Umea University is deeply involved in joint research with Technion (Israel Institute of Technology), the Haifa-based university that provides state-of-art technology to the Israel Defense Force (IDF) and its intelligence agencies. Several departments, which are involved in joint Israeli research, participate in multidisciplinary studies at Sellstrom’s CBRNE center…

American ambassador to the UN Samantha Power made emphatically clear that the “nerve gas used in Syria was more concentrated than the nerve gas in Iraq.” Her statement should be rephrased as: “Saddam may have trans-shipped U.S.-supplied nerve gas into Syria, but it wasn’t our nerve gas used against Syrian civilians.”

That is the essential point of the Sellstrom report: To take Washington off the hook for being the major supplier of nerve gas precursors, formulations, delivery technology and storage systems to the Middle East, including Israel, Egypt, Libya, Iraq and very possibly Syria (during the Clinton era of good will).

The UN report of chemical weapons on Syria lacks basic credibility due to the duplicitous record of its chief inspector, Ake Sellstrom, who is politically and financially compromised at every level. (Yoichi Shimatsu, The Sellstrom Report: The United Nations’ Syria Inspector Shills for NATO and Israel)

A day before the release of the UN Mission report, another carefully documented report by Mother Agnes Mariam de la Croix and the International Support Team for Mussalaha in Syria (ISTEAMS) was released with minimal media coverage.  (To read the full report in pdf click here large pdf slow download)

Its findings are unequivocal: the videos used by the US and its allies as evidence to blame the Syrian government were staged.

The study says:

From the moment when some families of abducted children contacted us to inform us that they recognized the children among those who are presented in the videos as victims of the Chemical Attacks of East Ghouta, we decided to examine the videos thoroughly…

Our first concern was the fate of the children we see in the footages.  Those angels are always alone in the hands of adult males that seem to be elements of armed gangs. The children that trespassed remain without their families and unidentified all the way until they are wrapped in the white shrouds of the burial. Moreover our study highlights without any doubt that their little bodies were manipulated and disposed with theatrical arrangements to figure in the screening.

If the studied footages were edited and published to exhibit pieces of evidence to accuse the Syrian State of perpetrating the chemical attacks on East Ghouta, our discoveries incriminate the editors and actors of forged facts through a lethal manipulation of unidentified children. (Mother Agnes Mariam de la Croix and the International Support Team for Mussalaha in Syria (ISTEAMS), The Chemical Attacks in East Ghouta Used to Justify a Military Intervention in Syria)

Mahdi Darius Nazemroaya who examined the report writes:

The independent ISTEAMS study contradicts the assertions of the Obama Administration and the entire US Intelligence Community […] through simple observations of the video material that has been put forward as evidence by the United States.

The ISTEAMS report does not deny that chemical weapons were used or that innocent Syrians have been killed. What the study does is logically point out through its observations that there is empirical evidence that the sample of videos that the US Intelligence Community has analyzed and nominated as authentic footage has been stage-managed.  This is an important finding, because it refutes the assertions of the representatives of the US Intelligence agencies who testified that the videos they authenticated provide evidence that a chemical weapons attack by the Syrian government took place in East Ghouda. (Mahdi Darius Nazemroaya, Look With Your Own Eyes: The Videos of the Chemical Attacks in Syria Show Tampered Scenes)

A lot of things do not add up in the footage presented by the US government.

 The same little boy in red is in two different locations

At least nine of these children appear in different footage from different locations

 A little boy that appears in two different videos with two different scenarios

Among a series of important findings, the ISTEAMS report notes that even though the attacks are said to have killed up to 1400 people, mostly children appear in the videos and several corpses are shown in different videos said to have been shot in various locations.

While this report seriously challenges the assertion that the Syrian government was behind the attacks, it was not covered by the Western mainstream media, toeing the imperial line and parroting Washington’s claims, which still lack evidence and credibility.

In addition, some controversy arose pertaining to allegations that the rebels were responsible for the attacks and used chemical weapons provided by Saudi intelligence. Dale Gavlak, the co-author of an article containing these allegations, now wants to dissociate herself from the article and is facing threats. Her career is in jeopardy:

The MintPress article, published on 29th August, through interviews with rebels, family members, and villagers in Eastern Ghouta, alleges that elements within the opposition were responsible for the alleged chemical weapons attack on 21st August, and that those chemical munitions had been supplied through Saudi intelligence chief, Prince Bandar bin Sultan…

Dale is under mounting pressure for writing this article by third parties. She notified MintPress editors and myself on August 30th and 31st via email and phone call, that third parties were placing immense amounts of pressure on her over the article and were threatening to end her career over it. She went on to tell us that she believes this third party was under pressure from the head of the Saudi Intelligence Prince Bandar himself, who is alleged in the article of supplying the rebels with chemical weapons.

On August 30th, Dale asked MintPress to remove her name completely from the byline because she stated that her career and reputation was at risk. She continued to say that these third parties were demanding her to disassociate herself from the article or these parties would end her career. On August 31st, I notified Dale through email that I would add a clarification that she was the writer and researcher for the article and that Yahya [Ababneh] was the reporter on the ground, but did let Gavlak know that we would not remove her name as this would violate the ethics of journalism. (Phil Greaves, Syria: Controversy surrounding MintPress Chemical Weapons Ghouta Report)

The information according to which Saudi intelligence was allegedly implicated in the Ghouta chemical attacks was mentioned by a UN official who wished to remain anonymous:

A senior United Nations official who deals directly with Syrian affairs has told Al-Akhbar that the Syrian government had no involvement in the alleged Ghouta chemical weapons attack: “Of course not, he (President Bashar al-Assad) would be committing suicide.”

When asked who he believed was responsible for the use of chemical munitions in Ghouta, the UN official, who would not permit disclosure of his identity, said:“Saudi intelligence was behind the attacks and unfortunately nobody will dare say that.” The official claims that this information was provided by rebels in Ghouta…

The UN official’s accusations mirror statements made earlier this year by another senior UN figure Carla del Ponte, who last May told Swiss TV in the aftermath of alleged CW attacks in Khan al-Asal, Sheik Maqsood and Saraqeb that there were “strong, concrete suspicions but not yet incontrovertible proof,” that rebels had carried out the attack. Del Ponte also observed that UN inspectors had seen no evidence of the Syrian army using chemical weapons, but added that further investigation was necessary. (Sharmine Narwani and Radwan Mortada, Questions Plague UN Syria Report. Who was behind the East Ghouta Chemical Weapons Attack?)

All of the above leads us to believe that this attack was one of the most horrific crimes committed in modern history, a diabolical staged operation which consisted in killing small children, producing fake video footage and photo ops of the corpses, all of which was intended to fabricate a pretext for military intervention under a humanitarian mandate.

The mainstream media which has obfuscated these crimes bear a heavy burden of responsibility. The New York Times has smeared the findings of Mother Agnes and her team, accusing her of “defending the regime” and “playing the Christian card”.  The NYT casually dismisses the evidence that the videos are fake. Read the ISTEAMS Report and then judge for yourself.

The war criminals who designed and launched this diabolical staged operation must face justice.

Procedures in the United Nations Security Council directed against the Syrian government  must be suspended.

We invite our readers to consult the ISTEAMS Report, as well as the following GR articles and video production: Please share these articles  and the ISTEAMS report!

GRTV VIDEO: How the Syrian Chemical Weapons Videos Were StagedBy James Corbett, Mother Agnes Mariam, and Prof Michel Chossudovsky, September 19, 2013

The Full ISTeam Report The Chemical Attacks in East Ghouta Used to Justify a Military Intervention in Syria, Mother Agnes Mariam and the International Support Team for Mussalaha in Syria (ISTEAMS), Geneva, 15 September 2013  [pdf slow download]

The Chemical Attacks in East Ghouta Used to Justify a Military Intervention in SyriaBy Mother Agnes Mariam, September 16, 2013

One Nun Puts the US Intel Community to Shame Over “Stage-Managed” Syria Footage By Mahdi Darius Nazemroaya, September 24, 2013

Syria: Fabricating Chemical Lies. Who is Behind the East Ghouta Attacks? By Prof Michel Chossudovsky, September 17, 2013

The Sellstrom Report: The United Nations’ Syria Inspector Shills for NATO and Israel By Yoichi Shimatsu, September 18, 2013

The Syria Chemical Weapons Attack: Human Rights Watch is Manipulating the Facts By Richard Lightbown, September 24, 2013

Saudi Arabia’s “Chemical Bandar” behind the Chemical Attacks in Syria? By Mahdi Darius Nazemroaya, September 06, 2013

Syria: Controversy surrounding MintPress Chemical Weapons Ghouta Report By Phil Greaves, September 22, 2013